Now that summer is in full swing, I am stocking my “going out bag”, which is a growing-up version of a diaper bag, with on-the-fly good times for my kids who are always on the go. Personally, as a science teacher, I always really dig a good crafty science experiment, which allows a naturally budding interest in engineering to develop in a way that doesn’t even feel like learning.
Making your own kite is so easy, all you need is a sheet of scrap paper (a menu, sales flyer, misprinted paper), a couple of scraps of ribbon, a used drinking straw, a bobbin of thread or string, tape, and a hole punch. I put them all in a baggie and throw them in my bag, JUST. IN. CASE. I have never regretted carrying around these few extra ounces, whether in the diaper bag or the camp kitchen. You just never know when this will come in handy. Here’s how to make the magic:
1. Take a sheet of paper (mine is made from reclaimed banana tree leaves) and fold it in half. In the lingo of educators, we call this “folding like a hamburger”.
2. To make the wings of the kite, make a fold that goes from a point 1/3 of the way in from the top corner, to 1/3 from the opposite edge on the bottom corner. This is hard to explain. See the picture for a visual.
3. Repeat the fold on the other side, so you have a spine and two wings.
4. Use a drinking straw to stabilize. Tape it from corner to corner across the widest span on the wings.
5. Punch a hole on the spine for the string. I am not telling where the ideal position of the hole is. That is part of the fun – experiment with the position of the hole until your kite flies awesome. Be glad for the extra 2 hours of entertainment you have been afforded by not knowing the ideal position of the hole.
6. Tape bits of ribbon to the tail. Again, experiment with how much ribbon, how long, how many strings, will make the best flying kite. Depending on the wind, the length of the string, height of the kid, weight of the paper and weight of the ribbon…. There’s just no telling what will make the best flying kite. That’s the fun of tweaking your design until it’s awesome.
Hope you love it! Do you carry recycled craft materials in your diaper bag or purse? Please share your suggestions in the comments below.
– Tiffany Norton, PicnicBasketCrafts.Etsy.com
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